Spare the Air Complaints: 2,200

Repeat offenders could get $400 tickets.

Wednesday, Dec 28, 2011  |  Updated 7:39 AM PDT
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Spare the Air Complaints: 2,200

kern.justin/flickr

Feeling sentimental and want to have a fire over the holidays? On certain days that sentimentality could cost you a $400 fine.

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The Christmas holiday didn't slow down the Spare the Air policing with 77 cases of people potentially burning their wood fireplaces, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

More than 400 people reported neighbors to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, according to reports. First-time offenders are usually given warning tickets, with repeat offenders getting fined $400.

During a winter Spare the Air Alert, the use of fireplaces, pellet stoves, wood stoves, fireplace inserts and outdoor fire pits is illegal. The alerts are issues each day at 2pm on the Spare the Air website. Concerned citizens can also register complaints online or by calling 1-877-466-2876.

The extremely dry December has led to many "no burn" days, with another weekend full of them likely coming up over New Year's.

The Merc reports that since the winter season began, on Nov. 1, there have been 2,200 complaints about wood fires on 10 no-burn days.

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